Having recently spent five nights with my husband and three kids packed like sardines in a cramped hotel room in Washington D.C., I appreciate the benefits of a vacation home more than ever. You might be wondering why the owner of a vacation rental company would stay in a hotel rather than a private home. I’m asking myself that now, too!

Since we only had a short time in D.C., we figured we didn’t want to spend time shopping and cooking and that we should be close to the main attractions. I did do a quick online search for homes, but it seemed many were already rented, required a weeklong stay, or were located too far out. Admittedly, I didn’t spend much time looking before I settled on a hotel room. From the moment we entered the room, we questioned that decision. Thankfully no one in my family snores…TOO loudly, that is! And the dreaded rollaway—even though we took turns sleeping on it, there were endless nightly complaints. When we wanted to stream a movie after touring museums and monuments all day, we learned that we’d have to pay an added fee for that! Plus, the kids got tired of eating cereal and yogurt for breakfast since that’s all we could do without cooking facilities, but breakfast out for five (along with lunch and dinner) can really add up!

I thought back to all the families who have stayed in our Starfish Vacation Rentals homes over the years, and it made me happy that we provided them with so much more than they could get from a hotel room. We pride ourselves on creating a home-away-from-home experience, from our well-equipped kitchens to our entertainment amenities. Choosing to rent a home gives you more space, comfort, and convenience to fully enjoy your vacation—without sacrificing on location or cost. Trust me, I learned the hard way!